Jul 14, 2020 17:14 UTC
  • Russian UN envoy slams exploitation of aid delivery mechanism for Syria

Russia’s Permanent Representative to the United Nations Vassily Nebenzia has condemned the exploitation of a cross-border mechanism for aid deliveries to Syria by some members of the UN Security Council, and their disregard for the sovereignty and territorial integrity of the war-ravaged Muslim country.

“Terrorist organizations positioned in Idlib use the humanitarian aid as a tool to exert pressure on civilian residents, and gain advantages. There is direct and indirect evidence for that,” Syrian Arab News Agency (SANA) quoted Nebenzia as saying in a Monday statement carried by Russian RIA Novosti news agency.

He added, “Moreover, some foreign parties exploit the mechanism of the cross-border aid deliveries to Syria in a way that threatens secession of a number of areas from the rest of the country.”

Earlier in the day, Russian Deputy Foreign Minister, Sergey Vershinin, had denounced politicization of aid deliveries to Syria, emphasizing that any humanitarian assistance to the country must be coordinated with the Damascus government.

The United Nations Security Council has approved aid deliveries to Syria from Turkey, but only after accepting a Russian call to close one of the two access points into the war-torn country.

 “Russia is consistently in favor of humanitarian deliveries to Syria with full respect of the country’s sovereignty and territorial integrity and with coordination of its legal government. This issue should not be politicized,” deputy Russian UN envoy Dmitry Polyanskiy said after the vote.

China's UN Ambassador Zhang Jun said Beijing always had reservations about the delivery of cross-border aid, but given the current situation in Syria, it does not object to retaining it “at this stage.”

Moscow and Beijing argue that the mechanism violates Syria's sovereignty and that aid should be channeled through the government of President Bashar al-Assad.

US brings reinforcement into northeastern Syria

Separately, US has brought in military reinforcements from neighboring Iraq into Geweran neighborhood in Syria’s northeastern province of Hasakah, SANA reported on Monday.

Two truckloads of military equipment and logistical gear, accompanied by vehicles equipped with radar systems and jamming devices, entered the Syrian territories and headed to the provincial capital city of Hasakah.

Meanwhile, dozens of people in al-Rashwaniyeh village, which lies in the Qamishli district of Hasakah province, have staged a rally to demand the immediate withdrawal of US and Turkish military forces from their area, and condemn new US economic sanctions on Syria under the so-called Caesar Act. The protesters burnt US flags as well.

“We in the village of al-Rashwaniyeh stand with our brothers in other villages of the Qamishli countryside to demand the expulsion of American invaders, who attacks the locals,” a citizen identified as Abdel Hamid Sinjar told SANA.

Hamdiya Mohammad Hasoud, another local resident, said she was participating in the rally with other fellow villagers to reiterate rejection of the presence of US and Turkish forces and to demand their immediate departure from their regions.